Monday, February 24, 2014

Alternative Clean Energy Roundup: 24 February 2014

Africa: The Green Economy and the Brics Countries - Bringing Them Together
17 February 2014 - The 'green economy' has been around as a concept since the 1970s but gained relevance again in the wake of the global economic recession in 2009 as government leaders looked towards new economic opportunities through sustainable, equitable and resilient economic growth.

International institutions such as the UN helped to shape the thinking around, and define green growth and its constituents, including economic development and social inclusion.

All these concepts are of significance to Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (the emerging-economy geo-political bloc known as 'the BRICS').

This paper aims to contextualise the development of green economies in the BRICS countries, highlighting important steps the individual countries in the BRICS have taken to establish systems to support the development of a green economy. read more>>>

USGBC Releases the Top 10 States in Nation for LEED Green Building
Illinois leads among all states in 2013; mid-Atlantic region of Washington, D.C, Maryland and Virginia tops list

Feb. 18, 2014 - Today, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its ranking of the Top 10 States for LEED®, the world's most widely used and recognized green building rating system. The list highlights the regions around the country that are at the forefront of sustainable building design and transformation. Utilizing less energy, LEED-certified spaces save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce carbon emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.

"The list of the Top 10 States for LEED is a continuing indicator of the widespread recognition of our national imperative to create healthier, high-performing buildings that are better for the environment as well as the people who use them every day," said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. read more>>>

Green Living Everyday

Man Builds Cozy Tin Can Cabin out of Shipping Containers in Northern Wisconsin
02/17/14 - One of the many side effects of the tiny home movement is that people are starting to realize that building their own home is not as complicated as DIY home building used to be. For one ambitious man, the experience of building his own shipping container cabin in northern Wisconsin was definitely a learning experience filled with both pros and cons. His project, the Tin Can Cabin, was built out of three repurposed metal containers. With no professional building or architecture experience, Steve managed to design and build the 480 square foot cabin by himself and furnish the home all at an amazing cost of just under $36,000.

With Steve doing the majority of the work on the home, the recently-finished Tin Can Cabin took almost four years to complete. With little building experience, he first consulted with an engineer in order to avoid any major mistakes in the building process. read more>>>

Nanoelectronics key to advances in renewable energy
February 16, 2014 - Nanoscale technology looks promising as a major contributor to advancements needed to fulfill the potential of emerging sources of clean, renewable energy.

Progress in the comparatively new area of nanoelectronics in particular could be the basis for new manufacturing processes and devices to make renewable energy systems and technologies more efficient and cost-effective.

Stephen Goodnick will focus on what nanoelectronics advances could do to help push the performance of solar energy systems to the next level in his talk at the 2014 annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Feb. 13-17 in Chicago. read more>>>

Wind and Weather

Duke Energy doubling Carolina solar capacity
February 17, 2014 - Duke Energy is looking to add 300 MW of new solar energy capacity in its Duke Energy Carolinas and Duke Energy Progress territories, to be in service by the end of 2015.

The company's request for proposal (RFP) is targeting solar facilities greater than 5 MW and is limited to projects that are in the company's current transmission and distribution queue, as those have the best chance of being completed by year end 2015.

The request for proposal gives bidders the flexibility to offer power and associated renewable energy certificates and/or to provide a turnkey solution in which Duke Energy takes ownership of the new facility. The ownership option gives Duke Energy additional benefits. read more>>>

Green Growth Initiative – From vision to implementation
February 17, 2014 - The global growth model is clearly on an unsustainable pathway. An exponentially expanding population, extravagant consumption patterns, rising greenhouse gases triggering catastrophic climate changes, dwindling biodiversity reserves, rapid and unregulated urbanization - these are just some of the environmentally alarming trends delivered by the existing model for economic growth. Thus, it is no surprise that while the global GDP has more than doubled in the past three decades the planet has paid a very heavy price with more than 60% of its natural ecosystems being degraded.

It was these concerns that gave birth to the idea of a global green economy. The aim was to revisit, revise, rethink and improve the clearly unsustainable growth model and come up with a viable solution. read more>>>

NY Green Bank open for business
February 13, 2014 - Business operations for the New York Green Bank have begun, which is expected to accelerate the transition to a more cost-effective, resilient and clean energy system for the state. The largest green bank in the nation, the NY Green Bank is the largest green bank in the nation is seeking to facilitate the financing of creditworthy clean-energy projects in New York state.

"The NY Green Bank will be the catalyst for significantly accelerating the flow of private capital to energy efficiency and renewable energy projects and will send a message to the financial markets that expanding our clean energy economy is a priority for New York State," Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said in a statement. read more>>>

Leading the growth of solar energy in New Zealand
Feb. 10, 2014 - New Zealand has focused on the use of eco-conscious, renewable energy. And Panasonic New Zealand has been promoting solar panels for homes and businesses with the belief that solar power holds the key to energy solutions. This video introduces various projects Panasonic is undertaking in New Zealand with its partner companies and the mounting expectations for the renewable energy business. New Zealand gets ample sunlight, and the demand for use of solar power is increasing. Please take a look at some of Panasonic's activities in the land of the Kiwi.

Various Sectors for Solar Panels

Download Standards from ANSI

New grid inter-connectivity in Chile to boost solar industry
Feb. 11, 2014 - Last month the Chilean Senate passed a law which allows the inter-connectivity between the central electricity system (SIC) and the north electricity system (SING). This connection will improve the entry of energy powered by CSP plants.

The Chilean Senate has finally taken a step forward the inter-connection of the two biggest electricity systems in the country. With the recent approval of the law, the SIC and SING systems will be able to connect and therefore balance the generation and demand of energy in each system.

For solar energy this is a significant development since radiation is more powerful in the northern region, while the strongest demand in on the central system. Consequently, the inter-connection of the two grids will allow solar plants to supply the SIC energy demand while entering the system through the SING. read more>>>

China announces $1.6 billion air pollution fund
Feb. 12, 2014 - China's Cabinet has announced that 10 billion yuan ($1.6 billion) has been set aside this year to reward cities and regions that make significant progress in controlling air pollution, highlighting how the issue has become a priority for the leadership.

The fund will be set up to reward rather than offer subsidies for the prevention and control of air pollution in the key areas, according to a statement released after a Wednesday meeting of the State Council led by Premier Li Keqiang. It said controlling pollutants such as particulate matter in the air should be a key task.

The statement said the consumption of coal should be controlled and also called for increased efforts to promote high-quality gasoline for vehicles, energy saving in construction and the use of environmentally friendly boilers. read more>>>

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